Granta | The Magazine of New Writing

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Outside the Whale

Salman Rushdie

‘For a man as truthful, direct, intelligent, passionate and sane as Orwell, ‘politics’ had come to represent the antithesis of his own world-view.’

Frankenstein’s Mother

Darcey Steinke

‘If pain is what makes others real to us, there was not another human being more real to me than my mother.’

Pause

Mary Ruefle

‘Nothing can prepare you for this.’ Mary Ruefle on menopause.

Tommy

Donald Ray Pollock

‘I began working at the Mead Paper Company in Chillicothe, Ohio, in the summer of 1973.’

Jim Magee’s Hill

Pamela Petro

‘No one who’s seen The Hill has been able to describe it to me without visceral discomfort. Actually, no one’s been able to describe it at all.’

How to be Gay and Indian

Manil Suri

‘This was supposed to be my great in-your-face coming-out campaign, which I’d fretted over for months beforehand. Had India suddenly lost its conservativeness, turned enlightened, even hip?’

Famished Eels

Mary Rokonadravu

‘After one hundred years, this is what I have: a daguerreotype of her in bridal finery; a few stories told and retold in plantations, kitchens, hospitals, airport lounges.’

The Ambivalent

Paulo Scott

‘He not only sees the World Cup as a ceasefire, but also as a series of sleights of hand that hide what’s really going on, political debauchery, spin and chicanery.’

Constitutional

Helen Simpson

‘The thing about a circular walk is that you end up where you started’

Election Night in Nicaragua

Sergio Ramirez

‘There was no room in our dreams for another war.’

Scarp | New Voices

Nick Papadimitriou

‘His imagination lingers in the woods and fields like a slowly drifting plant community and then dissolves into ditches lined with black waterlogged leaves – a residue of previous summers – and the ghosts of dead insects.’

Cold Storage

Oliver Sacks

‘Uncle Toby was alive, but suspended, apparently, in some strange icy stupor.’

West

Caryl Phillips

‘Curling herself into a tight fist against the cold, Martha huddled in the doorway and wondered if tonight she might see snow.‘

A Guide to the City of Beirut

Fawwaz Traboulsi

‘In Beirut, a well reveals layer upon layer, generation after generation, of ruins.’

Kashmir’s Forever War

Basharat Peer

‘Yes, the gun was from Pakistan, but the stones are our own. That is our only weapon against the occupation.’

The Road to Abyei

John Ryle

‘Bor is a long way from Khartoum – more than 700 miles. There were other hostile groups on the way and precious little food.’

Letters to My Father, Now Dead

Teresa Pàmies

‘I was glad to see General Pavel at your funeral, Father.’

Nuclear Arms And The Fate Of The Earth

Jonathan Schell

‘We have lived in the shadow of nuclear arms for more than thirty-six years, so it does not seem too soon for us to familiarize ourselves with them - to acquaint ourselves with such matters as the ‘thermal pulse’, the ‘blast wave’, and the ‘three stages of radiation sickness.’’

Eating the Eggs of Love

Salman Rushdie

‘Forested mesas flanked the road to Matagalpa; ahead, the multiform mountains, conical, twisted, sinuous, closed the horizon.’

Medtner

Philip Pullman

‘It feels like being a child in a room where adults are having a deep and passionate conversation about important things’

What Young Men Do

Richard Lloyd Parry

‘Everyone I met in West Kalimantan had tales of Dayak magic’.

Going Abroad

W.G. Sebald

‘In Vienna I visited none of the sights and spoke not a word to a soul’.

Love Jihad

Aman Sethi

‘He said Love Jihad, or the practice of Muslims seducing Hindu girls with the aim of converting them to Islam, was an existential threat to India.’

Cinema’s Invisible Art

Jeremy Sheldon

‘Audiences don’t know somebody sits down and writes a picture.’

Other Women

Francine Prose

‘Feminism is as basic to my sense of self as the fact that I have brown eyes.’

When Skateboards Will Be Free

Saïd Sayrafiezadeh

‘My mother and father believe that the United States is destined one day to be engulfed in a socialist revolution.’

Be Careful with that Fan

Andre Perry

‘I was stuck in Texas for a month. The days passed like slow-motion films.

An English Exile

Jeremy Seabrook

‘I was never a revolutionary, not really a Marxist.’

Garibaldi

Jeffrey Rotter

‘He chopped his way down North La Salle, pared the night air as he strolled along West Eugenie, peeled and julienned until at last he’d reached the dogleg at Sedgwick and Menomonee.’

Living Goddess

Isabella Tree

‘I longed to know what she was thinking, what she did all day when she wasn’t performing rituals.’

Excesses

Oliver Sacks

‘Deprived of continuity, of a quiet, continuous, inner narrative, he is driven to a sort of narrational frenzy: hence his ceaseless tales, his confabulations, his mythomania.’

Introduction: Possession

Sigrid Rausing

‘Possession takes many forms, and at the heart of it is death and dereliction, invasion and submission.’

The Many Voices of Africa

John Ryle

‘This is worth remembering: if it were not for Africa we would not be here at all.’

A Place on Earth: Scenes from a War

Anjan Sundaram

Dense forest and formless roads lead Sundaram to the most recent sites of conflict, burnt-out villages where pigs have taken over their former owner’s homes in an ‘inversion of man and beast, of civilization and nature’.

The Golden Goat to Communist Ratio

Miroslav Penkov

‘Few people can pinpoint where Bulgaria is on the map. Some people might tell you they can, but you shouldn’t believe them.’